West Prince | Bowing Down Home
Fiddlers from western Prince County tend to favor faster tempos than their Kings County counterparts, and manifest a more vigorous and far less controlled approach to bowing. They tend to decorate their tunes with suppressed-stroke syncopations and are somewhat less likely to use drones, graces and cuts than are Kings County players. They generally play more of a “French” repertoire (that is, tunes from francophone Canadian regions). They tend to prefer the two-footed tapping style; many of them hold the fiddle-face at a less extreme angle than their Kings County counterparts (to get at the fourth string, some simply rotate the bass-side of the instrument up to bring it into the path of the bow). See below for an annotated list of West Prince Fiddlers .
Historical model: fiddler from past generations whose music was preserved only on family tapes or single-pressing discs.
True to Type: sound is relatively typical of the region
"Slow" Fiddler: specializes in playing set tunes and waltzes
Hybrid Style - heavily influenced by external style
Hard to Call: recorded materials are inconclusive
New Wave: developed their playing styles during PEI's fiddling revival
West Prince Fiddlers on This Site (an Annotated List)
Historical Model: Russell Warren
True to Type: Joe Albert, Sidney Baglole, Jackie Biggar, Joseph Doucette, Pat Doucette, Victor Doucette, David Gaudet, Andrew Jones, Jim MacDougall, Dennis Pitre, Fred Richard, Elmer Robinson, Wilfred Silliker
"Slow" Fiddlers: Warren Leard, Harry Lecky, Ervin Rafferty
Hybrid Style: Alton Silliker (substantial “Maritime” influence)
Hard to Call: Leo Farrell (recorded when over 90), Frank O’Connor (not enough material)
New Wave: Keelan Wedge
Mandolin Soloist: Ralph Hardy